Absent Biological Father

Laura-Marie - posted on 06/02/2015 ( 4 moms have responded )

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My daughter is 10 years old. The last time she saw her father was at her 7th birthday party. Prior to that - he was there for her birth and stayed around for maybe 5 days. From birth until my daughter was 7 years old, he has probably seen her a total of 20 times. All short visits. Most times, I brought her to his place and stayed while they visited because she was not familiar with him, there have been issues with his living arrangements and subsequent significant others, and alleged drug use (information given to me from other people who know us both). He has 5 other children by two other women. I am in contact with her siblings and one of the other mothers and the kids see each other as often as possible (usually on birthdays). He has recently been messaging me to see her. Apologizing. Saying that he loves us both and wants to see her soon. I am now in a new relationship. Moved out on my own (from my parents) for the first time in my life. I am doing well. My daughter is maturing beautifully. She knows her father from pictures and from stories I tell her to help her realize she does have other siblings. They don't know each other as people at all. I'm confused as to whether I should have a serious sit down conversation with him - just to see where he is at before 're-introducing' him to my daughter? Is it even fair for me to let him think there may be a chance that I would let him see her when he has been so much more than absent for practically her entire life? I don't want her to resent me for not attempting to at least open the door.

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Michelle - posted on 06/03/2015

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It doesn't matter if he doesn't want to get lawyers involved, it's what needs to be done.

Laura-Marie - posted on 06/03/2015

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First, thank you for the advice. It is appreciated. You are right that it is not up to me to decide whether she has a relationship with her father. I know for a fact that he does not want to get lawyers involved, but I do believe getting custody is an important thing to take care of. I should note that he messages me once every 6 months or so apologizing for not making an effort, but nothing comes to fruition. I have not denied him seeing her. He has not made an effort to see her. I have given him our telephone number to call and our address to visit and again, nothing has come about. I refuse to tell her that her dad is coming when he just does not show up. He has been arrested a number of times in the past few years involving domestic abuse with his partner. He had a child recently who is now in the custody of the Children's Aid Society. I do not even have an address for him. Getting custody is probably the first step I should take.

Michelle - posted on 06/02/2015

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I agree with Evelyn, if you don't have court ordered visitation set then he can take it to court and gain visitation and custody. It's not up to you to decide if your daughter has a relationship with her Father or not. If you deny it then he can take you to court for parental alienation and that would be worse for you.
Get yourself a lawyer and get visitation set, that way if he doesn't keep to the schedule then that's his fault.

Ev - posted on 06/02/2015

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You should just get custody, visitation and child support set up instead of just seeing where this goes. Visitation being set gives him the times and days he can see her and if he does not show its on him. She should have that chance at a relationship with her father.

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